Long Island City (often
abbreviated L.I.C.) is the westernmost
neighborhood of the borough
of Queens in New York City. It is bounded on the north by the Queens
neighborhood of Astoria; on the west
by the East
River; on the east by Hazen Street, 31st Street, and New
Calvary Cemetery; and on the south by Newtown Creek, which separates Queens from
Brooklyn. It originally was the seat of government of
Township, and remains
the largest neighborhood in Queens. The area is part of
Queens Community Board 1
north of the Queensboro
Bridge and Queens
Community Board 2 south of the Bridge.
The zip codes of
Long Island City are 11101, 11102, 11103, 11104, 11105, 11106 and
LIC General Post Office, 11101
Long Island City, as its name suggests, was formerly a city,
created in 1870. Long Island City, was created from the merger
of the Village of
Astoria, and the
hamlets of Ravenswood, Hunters
Sunnyside, Dutch Kills, Steinway,
Bowery Bay and Middleton in Newtown Township, and was a separate
city until 1898.
The last mayor of Long Island City was a
notorious Irishman named Patrick Jerome "Battle-Axe"
. The city surrendered its independence in 1898 to
become part of the City of
Greater New York
. However, Long Island City survives as
11101 and ZIP code prefix
111 (with its own main post
office) and was formerly a Sectional center facility
, the Greater Astoria Historical
, a non-profit
historical organization, has been preserving the past and promoting
the future of the neighborhoods that are part of historic Long
Coat of arms
The Common Council of Long Island City in 1873 adopted the coat of arms
as "emblematical of the varied
interest represented by Long Island City." It was designed by
George H. Williams, of Ravenswood
. The overall
composition was inspired by New York City's Coat of Arms.
The shield is rich in
historic allusion, including Native-American, Dutch, and English
Island City is the eastern terminus of the Queensboro
Bridge, also known as the 59th Street Bridge, which is the
only non-toll automotive route connecting Queens and Manhattan.
of the bridge terminus are the Queensbridge
development of the New York City Housing
. Major thoroughfares include Vernon Boulevard,
21st Street, which is mostly industrial and commercial; Queens
Boulevard, which leads
westward to the bridge and eastward follows New York State Route 25 through Long
Island; and the western-most portion of Northern Boulevard, which becomes
Jackson Avenue (the former name of Northern Boulevard) west of
Queens Plaza. The most prominent feature aside from the
bridge is the community's green skyscraper, the 658-foot Citicorp
Building built in 1989 on Courthouse
Square, which is the tallest building on Long Island and in New York City outside
Long Island City was once home to many factories and bakeries, some
of which are finding new uses. The former Silvercup bakery is now home to
Studios, which produces notable works such as HBO's The
Sopranos. The Silvercup sign is visible from the
7 Train going into and out of
Queensboro Plaza. The former Sunshine Bakery is now one of the
buildings housing LaGuardia Community College.
Other buildings in the LaGuardia College
complex originally served as the location of the Ford Instrument
Company, at one time a major producer of precision machines and
devices. Artist Isamu
Noguchi converted a photo-engraving plant into a workshop; the
site is now a museum dedicated to
his work. High-rise housing is being built on a former
Pepsi-Cola site, and from June 2002 to September 2004 the former
Swingline Staplers plant was the temporary
headquarters of the Museum of Modern Art.
Other factories included Fisher Electronics
P.S. 1 Contemporary Art Center, an affiliate of the Museum of Modern Art, is the
oldest and second-largest non-profit arts center in the United
States solely devoted to contemporary art.
It is named after
the former public school in which it is housed.
is New York City's
only non-profit exhibition space dedicated to contemporary and
innovative sculpture. SculptureCenter re-located from Manhattan's
Upper East Side to a former trolley repair shop in Long Island
City, Queens renovated by artist/designer Maya Lin in 2002. Founded
by artists in 1928, SculptureCenter has undergone much evolution
and growth, and continues to expand and challenge the definition of
sculpture. SculptureCenter commissions new work and presents
exhibits by emerging and established, national and international
artists. The museum also hosts a diverse range of public programs
including lectures, dialogues, and performances.
The Fisher Landau Center for
is a private foundation that offers regular exhibitions of
Island City is also home to several special high schools: Academy
of American Studies (a history high school), Aviation High School, Information Technology High
School, International High School, Frank
Sinatra School of the Arts, Middle College High School, Newcomers High School,
and Robert F.
Wagner HS. Not to be confused with SHSAT-based
high schools, these schools offer programs that are included at
, now known as Cooper
Wiring Devices, was one of the last major factories in the area.
They have moved production to the People's Republic of
, and Plant #1, which was the largest of their factories
and housed their corporate offices, is being converted to
residential luxury lofts.
Long Island City is currently home to the largest fortune cookie
factory in the United States,
owned by Wonton Foods
four million fortune cookies a day. Lucky
included on fortunes in the company's cookies led to
110 people across the United States winning $100,000 each in a May
2005 drawing for Powerball
Park in Hunter's Point was used as background for the
final scenes of Steven Spielberg's film Munich and The Interpreter (starring
Sean Penn and Nicole Kidman).
An opening scene in Spiderman
2 (2006) was also filmed in Gantry Park.
Long Island City was featured more prominently in the 1997 film,
, with David Suchet
, which was filmed on location.
Island City is the home of 5 Pointz, a building housing artists' studios, which has
been legally painted on by a number of graffiti artists and is visible near the Court House Square station on the 7 train.
Island City is home to Water Taxi Beach, NYC's first non-swimming urban beach, located on the East River.
New York City plans to build 5,000 moderate income apartments in
this area, a 30-acre development called Hunter's Point South.
Long Island City is also home to Online Grocery Company, FreshDirect
, serving the Greater New York area
via deliveries. A customer can also order online and come to the
warehouse and pick up the food. Both the warehouse and
administrative offices are located on Borden Avenue.
Long Island City is the new home of independent film studio,
Long Island City also has a new district of residential towers
called Queens West, located at the East River just north of the
main LIRR Long Island City Station. Queens West is intended for
residents who commute to Manhattan to work by ferry or subway. The
first tower, the 42-floor Citylights, opened in 1998 with an
elementary school at the base. Others have been completed since
then and more are being planned or under construction.
The city has been the home since 1999 to the Brooks Brothers tie
manufacturing factory, which employs 122 people and produces more
1.5 million ties per year.
LIC as seen from Empire State Building
Long Island City is served by the New York City Department
Long Island City is zoned to:
Long Island City is zoned to:
A 7-12 school called Baccalaureate School
for Global Education
is in LIC.
9-12 high schools include:
- Seven Major League
Baseball players were born in Long Island City: Gus Sandberg (1895), Billy Zitzmann (1895), Joe Benes (1901), Tony
Cuccinello (1907), Ed
Boland (1908), Al Cuccinello
(1914), and Billy Loes (1929).
- Two Major League Baseball players have died in Long Island
City: John Hatfield (1909)
and Dike Varney (1950).
NBA's Ron Artest and
filmmaker Julie Dash  both grew up in the Queensbridge
Houses, the nation's largest public housing
- The first season of What Not to Wear was filmed in
Long Island City.
- The videogame Grand Theft Auto
IV, which takes place in a fictionalized version of New York
City called "Liberty City", features a neighborhood called "East
Island City" which resembles Long Island City in its architecture
and feel. Many signs and awnings from local Long Island City
businesses are used as graphical elements for stores in the East
Island City area. The Silvercup sign (changed to "Silverback"),
Citicorp Building, the P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center and the gantry
cranes in Gantry Plaza State Park, among other Long Island City
landmarks, also appear in some form in the East Island City
environment. Gantry Park was referred to as "The Black Towers" or
simply Hobart, which used to have a factory at the end of 49th
Long Island City is served by the , , , , , , and trains of the
New York City Subway
Island City and Hunterspoint Avenue Long Island Rail
Road stations are here, and a commuter ferry service operated
by NY Water Taxi at the East River Wharf. Cars enter by way of
Bridge, the Queens Midtown Tunnel and the Pulaski Bridge. The Roosevelt Island Bridge also connects Long Island City to Roosevelt
Island. Queens Boulevard, Northern
Boulevard and the Long
Island Expressway all pass through the area.